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Court permits GBC to collect TV license fees

Accra Fast Track High Court on Monday dismissed an order for Interlocutory injunction brought by Dr Charles Wereko-Brobby seeking to restrain the Ghana Broadcasting Corporation (GBC) from collecting and sharing TV licence fees with other bodies.

The Court presided over by Justice R. B Batu said the GBC can go ahead and collect the fees but must refrain from sharing it till a ruling is made on the substantive matter.

He said the GBC has the mandate by law to collect TV License from owners of TV sets across the nation, but was yet to determine whether they have the right to share the fees with any organisation.

He, however, noted that the assertion by the defendant that the plaintiff has no legal basis for filing the suit is misconstrued, saying Dr Wereko-Brobby is a citizen of the country and has the legal right to protect public property.

Justice Batu said Dr Wereko-Brobby is questioning the validity of the fees and strictly maintains that the fee is only for the GBC and not to be shared.

He said the GBC can go ahead and collect the fees for the development of the Corporation but should file a written application within seven days justifying the formula for sharing the collected licence.

The Court said the respondent would also have seven days within which to respond to the application after which a ruling would be made on the matter.

Dr Charles Wereko-Brobby, a former Chief Executive of the Volta River Authority, last week filed a suit at the Fast Track High Court in Accra, seeking to restrain the GBC from sharing TV Licence proceeds with the National Media Commission (NMC) and the Ghana Independent Broadcasters Association (GIBA).

The GBC and the other Defendants developed a formula by which on collection of the TV Licence Fees, GBC will retain 75 per cent whiles it gives 4 per cent to the Media Development Fund, 4 per cent to the NMC, 15 per cent to GIBA and 2 per cent to the Film Fund.

According to Dr Wereko Brobby, the Fees and Charges (Amendment) Instrument, 2014; LI 2216 was passed, by which TV licences fees were increased but did not authorize GBC to share the fees collected.

GNA

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